Poets & Killers Get Rich
May 17, 2016
In: Creative Writing
There are two groups of people: Poets & killers.
The poets are running around with their heart placed firmly on their sleeve, hoping that if they do authentic work, it'll sell itself.
The killers, on the other hand, are running around selling everything, none of which is actually authentic, nor genuine, nor useful. (We call these people “scam artists.”)
Yet, neither one of these groups is going to make it.
Truth is, you might be as authentic as they come, but if you can't get anyone to pay you for it, you're dead in the water. The same goes for the killers: You might be great at bullshitting, but if that's all you've got, you'll be old news before tomorrow.
It's the rare combination of poet & killer—he who does courageous, creative work AND finds courageous, creative ways to sell it—who doesn't just get rich, but makes the world richer.
Because these are the people we don't just admire, but we want to join.
When you can't sell your work, everything around you becomes a threat: Other people, lower prices, better websites, more clever names.
But when you can?
You're not threatened.
Because you are the threat.
*Hat tip to David Ogilvy, who first introduced the idea of “killer & poet,” and how important intelligently applied creativity was to to effective selling.